The Phantom Tollbooth

The Phantom Tollbooth

Book - 1961
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A journey through a land where Milo learns the importance of words and numbers provides a cure for his boredom.
Publisher: New York : Epstein & Carroll ; distributed by Random House, [1961]
Copyright Date: ©1961
ISBN: 9780394815008
Branch Call Number: JF JUSTE-N
Characteristics: 255 pages : illustrations ; 24 cm
Additional Contributors: Feiffer, Jules - Illustrator


From the critics

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Jun 26, 2017

Whimsical story that's easily understandable for young readers but contains a wealth of word play and puns that make it that much richer. Not your average fantasy tale.

Jun 01, 2017

I like words. I like books. Words and books can speak to you as Jessica (from the book Because of Mr. Terupt) says. This book gives you something to think about. What IS more important- words or numbers? For each person it is different- but before you pick up this amazing book up put on your thinking cap- you're going to need it.

May 23, 2017

Amazing story. Although it seems to be meant for younger readers, this book speaks about problems in the world today. Adults can easily enjoy this world as well. I found this book to be extremely enlightening about a variety of topics.

AL_KELSEY Mar 10, 2017

Every once in awhile, you just need a fun, quirky story with completely original characters and creatures, and The Phantom Tollbooth is just that book. It reminds me a little bit of Alice in Wonderland in the fact that a young person is transported to a magical world, meets unusual friends, and has to save the land! This book was light and fun, and well-deserving of its "classic" status!

Feb 14, 2017

Witty and whimsical. A challenging but rewarding read for younger readers, and an enjoyable and quirky read for older readers.

Jan 17, 2017

Negative soup?
Author just as clever as Piers Anthony.
Book doesn't insult the audience.
Film adaption just as good.

Dec 12, 2016

A timeless classic for readers that like the silliness of Dr. Suess and Roald Dahl.

Nov 19, 2016


Oct 09, 2016

This was my favorite book for several years. It is hilarious; the puns are intelligent, not cheesy; it is an adventure any child would wish to have; and finally, it actually is educational! Anyone will love this one.

Apr 22, 2016

I recommend the Phantom Toll booth to ages 8 and up. The book was about a boy named Milo, who was always bored and suddenly gets a surprise package and he opens it and has many adventures.

When I first read this book, I thought it was, “This is the cleverest book I have ever read!” The words were structured like a spider’s web: light but strong. The author tinkered with the language to make intelligent lands and puns. He used synonyms to expand the reader’s vocabulary and used a lot of idioms in a literal and figurative fashion to make it humorous. The book conveyed a love of knowledge that I have never seen before and an imagination of a land that was very complex but so simply explained that it is hard to believe it is a work of one person and not many. I thoroughly enjoyed the humorous and twisty – turny language along with the clash of the nonsensical and absurd characters. The book has taught me that language can be playful.

I thought that the Kingdom of Wisdom is very similar to the Internet. For instance, Wisdom and the Internet, you can access all the information known to mankind. Dictionopolis is along the same lines as and because they define and give synonyms and antonyms. Continuing the analogy, Digitopolis would be the computer itself with the 0s and 1s because 0 and 1 are numbers and Digitopolis’ whole life revolves around numbers and equations. The valley of sound is parallel to the speakers, videos, and the headphone because every day, the new sounds are released to the world. The forest of sight resembles the entire screen because you see the screen. Conclusions and Ignorance has a similarity with the inaccurate websites and the demons who live in Ignorance can be equated to software bugs and viruses. So if Mr. Juster had to rewrite the book in today’s day and age, maybe Milo’s adventures would be inside the Internet. Instead of swimming in the Sea of Knowledge, Milo could surf on it!

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Jun 01, 2017

orange_dog_3105 thinks this title is suitable for 10 years and over

May 23, 2017

Ratsarecool3 thinks this title is suitable for 8 years and over

Feb 14, 2017

kcbcsnitst thinks this title is suitable for 8 years and over

violet_butterfly_6383 thinks this title is suitable for 10 years and over

Jul 23, 2015

red_cobra_341 thinks this title is suitable for All Ages

Feb 21, 2015

maryamsami thinks this title is suitable for 12 years and over

Dec 20, 2014

lilybluesea thinks this title is suitable for 8 years and over

Aug 26, 2014

Dorca thinks this title is suitable for All Ages

Aug 09, 2014

isaacp thinks this title is suitable for 10 years and over

maroon_giraffe_14 Jun 24, 2014

maroon_giraffe_14 thinks this title is suitable for 8 years and over

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Jun 02, 2017

“Besides," explained the second, “one word is as good as another— so why not use them all?”
“Then you don't have to chose which one is right.” advised the third.

Dec 12, 2016

“Expect everything, I always say, and the unexpected never happens.”

Oct 30, 2016

"Step right up, step right up - fancy , best-quality words right here '', announced one man in a booming voice. "Step right up - ah, what can I do for you, little boy? How about a nice bagful of pronouns - or maybe you'd like our special assortment of names?"

Oct 30, 2016

"I AM KAKOFONOUS A. DISCHORD, DOCTOR OF DISSONANCE", roared the man, and, as he spoke, several small explosions and a grinding crash were heard.

PollyFossey Oct 21, 2014

"...many places you would like to see are just off the map and many things you want to know are just out of sight or a little beyond reach. But someday you'll reach them all, for what you learn today, for no reason at all, will help you discover all the wonderful secrets of tomorrow."

PollyFossey Oct 21, 2014

"But there is so much to learn," he said, with a thoughtful frown.

"Yes, that's true," admitted Rhyme; "but it's not just learning things that's important, It's learning what to do with what you learn and learning why you learn things at all that matters."

Natasha_Reanne Mar 09, 2012

"Now you know what you must do"
"I'm afraid I don't" admitted Milo feeling quite stupid.
"Well," continued the watchdog impatiently,"since you got here by not thinking, in order to get out, you must start thinking." And with that he hopped into the car.


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